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Pennsylvania Wilds region hit record high for tourism in 2018

Clearfield County, PA – Some good news… Statistics show that the Pennsylvania Wilds region hit a new record high for tourism and traveler spending in 2018.

Travelers spent more than $1.8 billion in the Pennsylvania Wilds region in 2018. This is a 2.2% increase from 2017 and a new record high (Tourism Economics). Clearfield County was a major reason for that increase.

Traveler spending increased from 277.3 million in 2017 to 292.7 million in 2018—a 15.4 million increase and the largest amount of growth from year to year ever recorded in Clearfield County. The next closest county in traveler spending was Lycoming (home of the Williamsport Little League World Series) with a 12.8 million increase.

See the full travel spending report.

Traveler spending in 2018 helped Clearfield County grow economically in every category:
Lodging $30.2 million 3% increase
Food & Beverage $65.5 million 4.8% increase
Shopping $54.3 million 1.8% increase
Recreation 48.7 million 2.4% increase
Transportation 94 million 3.6% increase

This type of growth also helped create jobs in the travel industry. In 2018, traveler spending helped create 33 more jobs in Clearfield County. This 2018 economic study on traveler spending shows that the travel industry employment in Clearfield County is at 1,869 employees.

Clearfield County has always been known as a recreational and hunting destination. Clearfield County has beautiful state parks (Parker Dam and S.B. Elliot), the largest gun shop in Pennsylvania (Grice Gun Shop), the largest burger eating challenges in the world (Denny’s Beer Barrel and Pub), and 102 miles of the West Branch of the Susquehanna offering fishing and kayaking experiences.

Visit Clearfield County promotes more than the featured businesses and recreation mentioned above.

They have started marketing our events and what our downtowns have to offer. Visit Clearfield County invited influencers and travel writers to our county so that they get to experience our small towns and what the rest of Clearfield County has to offer.

The City of DuBois deserves a lot of credit for this large growth as well. They brought the USCAA College World Series to Clearfield County and the City of DuBois in 2018. That event alone produced an economic impact like no other in our county, producing over $400,000 in traveler spending alone in a five-day span. These fields in DuBois are bringing visitors from all over the state and country.

The Executive Director of Visit Clearfield County, Josiah Jones, had this to say about the traveler spending report, “We are very excited to see that traveler spending has increased at a record level in our PA Wilds region and in Clearfield County for many reasons. As a Destination Management Organization, we strive on well thought out marketing and advertising that will help bring visitors to our area, and we are always looking for a rate of return. The economic impact of travel in Pennsylvania report, provided by Visit PA (our state tourism office), gives you the data and support you need so that you can continue making the right choices or decisions for promoting your region or county.”

“This is also a testament of how well we work together with our partnerships and communities locally and regionally,” Jones says. “We cannot make strides economically without the help of our community and regional partnerships. I am very excited and humbled as a community member to hear visitors say that they are always so welcomed and taken care of in our community. Our community is very hospitable, and they are our best ambassadors. Without them, we cannot make successful strides like we are right now. We are very excited about the large growth in traveler spending, but not as excited as we are for our community and its leaders. Thank you, Clearfield County residents.”

For more information about Visit Clearfield County, please visit us at 208 Plaza Drive in Clearfield or visit our website at www.visitclearfieldcounty.org. You can also follow Visit Clearfield County on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram so that you can stay up to date on new events in the area.